The Powder River Basin in Wyoming has been exploited for the production of oil and gas for several decades. The development of horizontal drilling combined with large volume multi-stage hydraulic fracturing has initiated a new era of oil and gas production. More than 900 horizontal wells have been drilled in the Upper Cretaceous reservoirs of the Powder River Basin. Oil and gas producers often target more than one formation within any given acreage position. The focus of development has been in the Frontier Formation, the Turner sandy member, the Shannon and Sussex sandstone members of the Cody Shale, and the Parkman sandstone member of the Mesaverde Formation, along with the Niobrara Formation as an oil resource play.
This paper presents a historical review of the completion designs and production trends from horizontal wells completed in the Upper Cretaceous formations. With a focus on multistage completions, well performance indicators are used in conjunction with a spatial sampling algorithm to identify dominant production influences attributed to completion and stimulation design.
Using public records, a database was created, cataloging a completion metrics, including lateral pay length, fracture stage spacing, mass and type of fracture proppant, volume and type of fracturing fluid, and current production records. Correlations between fracture treatment design and hydrocarbon production are provided for each formation. Production type curves, initial production rates, and effective decline rates are presented for each formation. Geospatial trends in hydrocarbon properties, such as gas-oil ratio (GOR) and oil gravity are provided.
The catalog of data and correlations provides a useful reference for exploring or developing acreage within the basin.
Optimizing completion programs can be fast-tracked through the analysis of preceding completions and early time production indicators.